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Groves: I believe I’m the heavy favorite against Murray


By Scott Gilfoid: George Groves (23-3, 18 KOs) is a three-time loser when challenging for world titles. He’s going to be facing four-time world title failure Martin Murray (33-3-1, 16 KOs) this month on June 25 in a battle on Sky Box Office pay-per-view at the O2 Arena in London, UK.

According to the 28-year-old Groves, this could be the end of the line for the 33-year-old Murray if he loses this fight. Groves points out that Murray is an older fighter, and that he’s tried everything he can to try and win world titles in four attempts and he’s failed to win.

Groves has failed in his own efforts at winning world titles, and it’s hard to see him as being in the proper play to be handing out advice to anyone, least of all to a guy like Murray. It’s the pot calling the kettle black. Both of these guys are in the position where the lower – and even the winner – should start thinking about retiring soon, because it’s hard to visualize either of them going anywhere with their respective careers.

“I think if (Martin) loses he will think about packing it in,” said Groves. “I can’t speak for him but he’s older than me and he’s exhausted all the natural things that a fighter can do to win a world title.

Murray is only five years older than Groves. I see them both being physically the same age. Chronological age is meaningless in many cases when you’re talking about only five years. They both look the same age to me, and I think Groves has been on the slide with his career since his second knockout loss to Carl Froch in May 2014.

Groves was knocked out cold in the 8th round in that fight. In his bouts since then, Groves hasn’t looked like that once youthful looking fighter that dropped Froch in the 1st round in their first fight in November 2013. Groves gave Froch huge problems for six rounds before gassing out and getting stopped in the 9th round.

I don’t see Groves as being the same fighter he was back then. He looks older and doesn’t seem to fight with the same energy and confidence that he had in that fight and in his fights before that one. I don’t think it was the loss that did it to Groves. I just think he’s one of those guys that aged quickly and had a very, very prime of his career.

Ring Magazine has Groves ranked at #5 in their super middleweight rankings. I don’t agree with the rankings. They have Callum Smith at No.6 and Anthony Dirrell at No.7. I do not agree with Groves being ranked above those fighters.

Here are the Ring’s rankings for super middleweight.

1. James DeGale
2. Badou Jack
3. Gilberto Ramirez
4. Andre Dirrell
5. George Groves
6. Callum Smith
7. Anthony Dirrell
8. Arthur Abraham
9. Felix Sturm
10. Fedor Chudinov

Here are my own rankings for super middleweight:

1. Gilberto Ramirez
2. Badou Jack
3. Anthony Dirrell
4. Andre Dirrell
5. Callum Smith
6. Arthur Abraham
7. Fedor Chudinov
8. George Groves
9. James DeGale
10. Rogelio Medina

Groves is a decent contender but no way does he deserve to be ranked at No.5 in my view. I think he’s not as good as Callum Smith, Anthony Dirrell, Chudinov or Abraham. I don’t rate Sturm as a top 10 contender. I think he should have lost to Chudinov in their recent fight.

“He [Murray] didn’t pull it off at middleweight, he’s moved up to super middleweight and he’s had a crack at Arthur Abraham and let himself down there,” said Groves. “If he doesn’t win then I don’t know where he goes from there.”

Like I said, I don’t think it matters who wins or loses the Groves-Murray fight. I can’t see either of them going anywhere. The winner will obviously get another shot at a world title, but I don’t think they deserve the shot. Groves and Murray should be fighting for the basement spot at No.15 with the WBC rather than fighting in an eliminator bout in my view.

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Groves was just whipped last year by Bdou Jack in September 2015. How in the world is Groves now on the verge of getting yet another world title fight after beating two low level fighters in Andrea Di Luisa and David Brophy. I mean, I can understand Groves being given the chance to work his way back to another spot, but for him to be put in an eliminator bout for the WBC 168lb title after beating those two guys, it just seems wrong to me. Why aren’t fighters like Anthony Dirrell, Zac Dunn, and Patrick Nielsen getting put in title eliminators quickly like Groves?

“I believe that I’m the heavy favorite in this one and you’ll see why on fight night,” said Groves.

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